The Stages of Shipping… [THE FANS]

**BEFORE I START THIS POST, PLEASE BE AWARE THAT MY SHIPS ARE MY OWN. I DO NOT WISH FOR THEM TO BE JUDGED AND ALTHOUGH I DO NOT UNDERSTAND WHY PEOPLE MAY SHIP SOME SHIPS, I WILL NOT JUDGE THEM**

I am a shipper. I will not deny it. I am one of those crazy fangirls all of the Fandoms speak of. For my many, many Fandoms, there are indeed many, many ships. (**LOOK AT THE END OF THE POST FOR MY EXPLANATION FOR A NAME OF ONE OF MY SHIPS) These ships always start out as a “NOTP” (Never my One True Pairing or whatever you want to call it: your least favourite ship), or a BROTP (A brotherly pairing) and then they progress into fluff, then as we call it here as fangirls… Smut. I wondered when I would breach that topic, guess today is that day.

So here we go, I’ve finally figured out my stages of a ship. Let me know if yours is like this too!

Stage 1: “WHAT THE HOLY CHUCK?!”
This is the stage where you have pretty much no clue why on Earth people would ship this ship. This could even be the NOTP stage, or just a confusion and slight worry for the rest of your Fandom. I mean, Casatron?! Really…?

Stage 2: “It’s…not so bad. I suppose.”
Uh oh. No going back now…not unless you accidentally happen across something on your Tumblr dashboard which could scar you for life. Haha… So you start to consider shipping it, leading onto the next stage..

Stage 3: “That could actually work..”
It could be that you think they’re pretty cute, or just generally work. I mean, I wouldn’t exactly call Sheriarty cute, but I could definitely see a relationship working out there. An interesting Consulting Criminal/Detective relationship.

Stage 4: “I might ship it.”
This is the stage where you actually start to label your feelings towards this couple as a SHIP. Wow. Time for fan art and looking into some fanfiction perhaps? Just stick to the fluff for now. 😉

Stage 5: “OKAY! Okay, I ship it!”
Well, well, well. What do we have here. Openly admitting your ship? Go tell it to the world!

Stage 6: “Should I really be shipping- WHAT HAVE I GOT TO LOSE?!”
I’ve had this a couple of times, where I think: “I probably shouldn’t be shipping this”. It’s often after talking to other shippers who have that ship as a stage 1 or even a stage 0.. Ooh… not so good.

Stage 7: “Is more than shipping possible?”
YES. Yes it is! You’re on your way to making this ship into an OTP… This could be the time to venture further into the depths of AO3 and Tumblr..

Stage 8: “OTP!”
You would do anything for this ship. Nothing is too weird! ..well maybe tentacles.. But you are in amongst the deep stuff, but also appreciating the cuter things of the ship. It could be a very fluffy coffee shop AU with some angst and also a very hot sex scene.. Uh.. This isn’t awkward at all.

Stage 9: “THIS IS THE BEST SHIP THAT EVER LIVED!!”
This ship. THIS SHIP. You aren’t the one just reading it. You’re writing it. Self-inserts, smut, fluff, AUs, headcanons. You’re drawing it. It’s in your mind. It’s always there.

Stage 9 ¾: “FEEEEEEEEELS.”
What. Just. Happened?! Was it an actual canon event? A death or does half of your ship leave the presence of the other? Or is it a fanart? At this stage, you’ll probably be in denial. So much of the denial. You’ll keep shipping your OTP, but every so often you’ll be reminded of this feels-punch to the gut. And you will cry. (Or at least, I did.)
You could just miss out this stage altogether.

Stage 10: “Ooh…what’s this new ship?”
You find a new one, and the stages start again. Of course, you won’t push your OTP aside completely, but this ship may even get to another stage 9 status. It could be something you’ve never heard of and never thought about, like Sevin (Sam/Kevin) or Moriadler (Moriarty/Irene Adler) or Grocket (Groot/Rocket).

What did you think? Do you agree with my stages? Have you experienced these? Let us know at @study_in_fandoms

– Becca (And the rest of A Study In Fandoms) 🙂

**PAVLOVA: Pavlova is the ship name ASIF typically uses for Wincestiel. I was reading a particularly…nsfw fanfiction while I was eating a lovely raspberry pavlova dessert. The result of this was being put off it for probably forever and nearly spluttering it everywhere.**

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